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CULT:Katherines white iris

From: "Jan Clark" <janclarx@hotmail.com>

Hi Katherine, and welcome to the list,
>First, two years ago, I bought some irises, name unknown.  I 
>bought it in the spring right after it had bloomed, so it didn't >bloom that year.  The next year (last year), a stalk grew up, and I >had 4 beautiful blooms (white with a ruffled reddish purple edging). >This year when it bloomed, it was totally white.  What did I do >wrong?  Is there any way to "fix" it?

The pattern of your original iris (white with a coloured border) is called 'Plicata'.
There are a number of reasons as to why this years bloom is white.
1. You say you bought several irises. Perhaps there was a mixture of colours, and this is not the same plant blooming.

2. Using roundup to kill weeds near your irises, will cause coloured irises to bloom white and sometimes distorted.

3. Frost burn. I had a blue and white plicata last year, that was badly frost damaged, and bloomed smaller and with barely any colour on the edges. The edged did look rather 'fried'.

Iris do not change flower colour unless they produce a 'sport' or somatic mutation, which is rather rare. This topic has been thoroughly dealt with in the past and a search of the archives at the Mallorn site may bring further enlightenment. The address doesn't come to mind, but you will find it at the bottom of any of John Jones' postings. 
Enjoy the list, and ask as many questions as you like. I have only been growing irises for 2 years or so, and have learnt a lot here.

Cheers, Jan clark

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